Examples of a new climate in community partnership projects, where a priority is given to listening, provide a perspective for studies of language and social injustice. We need to spend more time listening to how global learners, especially in the most disadvantaged communities, actually describe their needs. A utilitarian view of English soon emerges. It is difficult to generalize about causes and solutions because of the diversity of situations, but a useful perspective is provided by the notion of empowerment, illustrated from the situation of those who teach English as a Foreign Language. The current state of Welsh illustrates some practical ways of taking forward the relationship between linguistic and economic factors, which should not be seen as being in contrast or in competition, but as forces operating in synergy.